During the Ukrainian crisis, Moscow has been attempting to push Ukraine into its orbit. Russia claims that Ukraine must protect its ethnic Russian population. But Ukraine, which has a high proportion of ethnic Russians, has shown tenacity in its resistance against Russia.
The conflict began in 2014, when Russia annexed Crimea. Russia responded with an attack on Ukraine that has claimed thousands of lives and sparked a refugee crisis.
Ukrainian forces have held back Russian advances for two weeks. The Russian army has been unable to capture major cities such as Kiev, Kharkiv and Kherson. It has also been unable to seize the country’s east.
Russia’s invasion of Ukraine set off the largest armed conflict in Europe since World War Two. The Ukrainian government has mounted a strong counteroffensive, which has reclaimed thousands of square miles in the Kharkiv and Kherson regions.
Russia has also used the hybrid approach, combining regular Russian troops with irregular fighters and disinformation tactics. Many defense analysts say that Russian forces have suffered from poor logistics and low morale. They say that Ukraine’s weaker forces have been able to maximize their advantages in the battlefield.
Russia has faced strong resistance from Ukrainian soldiers and civilian resistance fighters. Analysts say that this resistance has been most effective when Russians are on edge.
The Ukrainian government has enlisted the help of Western non-governmental organizations (NGOs) to support the protests. It has also received anti-tank weapons from the United States. Some observers are speculating that Russia could attack Ukraine in the near future.